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Fifty-Fifty: Producing Gender Equality

14.02.2017 - Toby Ashraf, Joslyn Barnes, Anna Serner, Vinca Wiedemann, Isabell Šuba

While great strides have been made recently by women in the film industry, there is no denying the facts: filmmaking mirrors many other professions in that it is still a little boys’ club. Prominent advocates for the cause examine the current state of affairs and show how initiatives, film schools, mentoring programmes and especially everyone involved in production can actively foster equal opportunity on grassroots levels. Questions include how to infiltrate dude-dominated technical fields as well as how to address the dichotomy of traditional male/female gender constructions and account for the multiplicities of identity in-between.


Toby Ashraf

photo of Toby Ashraf
Toby Ashraf is a journalist, curator and translator based in Berlin. He writes for various publications and moderates talks at Berlinale Panorama, Forum and Generation. In 2014 he founded the Berlin Art Film Festival and in 2015 won the Siegfried Kracauer Prize for Best Film Review. In 2016/17 he organised CIMA Berlin, a series of monthly screenings of queer films with live Arabic translation for refugees. He appears in films occasionally and focuses on feminism and queer cinema and culture in his work.

Joslyn Barnes

photo of Joslyn Barnes
Joslyn Barnes is the co-founder and chief operating officer of Louverture Films, a production company for independent films of historical and social relevance. Her producing credits include the documentaries TROUBLE THE WATER, BLACK POWER MIXTAPE, THE HOUSE I LIVE IN, CONCERNING VIOLENCE, Yance Ford’s STRONG ISLAND and Tala Hadid’s THE HOUSE IN THE FIELDS, as well as the fiction films BAMAKO, CEMETERY OF SPLENDOUR, WHITE SUN and Lucrecia Martel’s forthcoming ZAMA.

Anna Serner

photo of Anna Serner
Anna Serner trained as a lawyer and studied at Stockholm Film School. She has served as CEO at the Advertising Association of Sweden and at the Swedish Newspaper Organisation, and has been the CEO of the Swedish Film Institute since 2011. Her gender equality work there led to changes in national film funding and has received international attention, including in the New York Times and Variety. She has lectured widely on ‘the Swedish model’ at high-profile festivals and film schools.

Vinca Wiedemann

photo of Vinca Wiedemann
Vinca Wiedemann is the director of the National Film School of Denmark and a former film editor, script writer, producer and story supervisor. She worked with Lars von Trier on his screenplay for MELANCHOLIA and NYMPHOMANIAC and as a creative producer on Susanne Bier’s Oscar-winning IN A BETTER WORLD. She has held several positions at the Danish Film Institute and was the co-founder and first artistic director of New Danish Screen, a production support programme for talent development.

Isabell Šuba

photo of Isabell Šuba
Trained at the Film University Babelsberg Konrad Wolf, director Isabell Šuba has started several programmes for new film talent, partly in cooperation with the University of Television and Film Munich and Internationale Filmschule Köln. Her documentary short CHICA XX MUJER won the Next Generation Short Tiger Award at the 2012 Cannes Film Festival, while her debut feature MEN SHOW MOVIES & WOMEN THEIR BREASTS was named the Best Socially Relevant Film at the 2014 Max Ophüls Festival. Her latest feature, HANNI & NANNI, will hit cinemas in 2017.